15 April 2009

Unconscious Competence

I have in the last year or so found it difficult to immediately explain why I perceive a certain system design is flawed (at least from an architectural viewpoint), while my gut feeling strongly tells me it is. It seems I'm most sensible to conceptual integrity, or rather lack thereof.
Usually I can do a some logical reasoning to support my initial conclusion, but it seems backwards that I reach the conclusion first and find the arguments to support it afterwards.
I stumbled upon the concept of code smell, and from there upon unconscious competence, which pretty much sums my experience. I had never heard of unconscious competence before, but I'm relieved that others have recognised it as a "level of competence".

Now it could just be that I am totally delusional about architecture, and is actually unconsciously incompetent instead. It seems nobody outside programmers recognise that you could be unconsciously competent in such a highly cognitive area...

Note: I wasn't finding the definitions in wikipedia, but here, but I thought the wikipedia definitions were more understandable. A google search found these pages on the subject as well (I filtered all pages by personnel development companies and about athletic coaching):

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